With a name like 'flying fish' it would be reasonable to expect that this specialist group of fish from the Exocoetidae family can actually actually achieve what their name implies. But how can that possibly be true? They are of course fish and therefore surely they are designed to swim - not fly?
So, do flying fish really fly?
|Can flying fish really fly?|
To glide upward out of the water, a flying fish will moves its tail up to 70 times per second. It then spreads its pectoral fins and tilts them slightly upward to provide lift. At the end of a glide, it folds its pectoral fins to re-enter the sea, or drops its tail into the water to push against the water to lift itself for another glide, or to change direction.
The curved profile of the "wing" is comparable to the aerodynamic shape of a bird wing. The fish is able to increase its time in the air by flying straight into or at an angle to the direction of updrafts created by a combination of air and ocean currents.
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